Course Caddies: Desert Valley No. 10
Pick Your Fairway, Pick Your Approach and Let's Eagle

This year’s breakdowns now include video of each hole being played, although your feedback is most appreciated on these designs. How do you play? Share your strategy or Golden Tee Great Shots in the comments below.

All holes will then be available for reference on the Course Caddies page—a bookmark must for the entire encyclopedia! Enjoy, and stay tuned for plenty more.


Desert Valley No. 10

You’re going to want to finish your hotdog before you hit your tee shot here. And, buddy, please wipe your hands first before hitting the trackball. You know the drill.

We make the turn on Desert Valley and we are greeted with island fairways. You have three of them sitting directly in front of you, stacked neatly together in sequence. All three can be reached off the tee box—an important note on this par-5—and there’s not necessarily a wrong way to play. Your decision here will depend on wind, pin placement and comfort, but again, you have options.

It’s nice to have option.

This sounds all nice and rosy, but you still have to land it on one of the three. You have more surface to land on than you’d think, although it doesn’t mean it will be easy. With a 3, 4 or 5-wood—and sometimes even a driver—you can get your ball to stop nicely with the helping hand of backspin. You need backspin here. Get to know it, get used to it, and be sure to equip it.

Assuming you land on one of the fairways—and let’s assume that you do to keep things positive—you’ll have yet another decision for your next shot. This decision might have been made for you depending on where you land, although you can still go left around the trees or over the desert hill and through the gap between the trees more toward the right.

As was the case before, both shots work just fine. While you can’t hit a driver up and over that dirt hill, a fairway wood will do. You’ll have to maneuver the trackball some to get the ball where you want it to go, but the shot is relatively safe.

You can also choose to go left, approaching the hole with a big ol’ A-1-type shot. Managing distance (and spin) will be crucial, although this can be an easier approach with a pin tucked in the far right.


The trick here is to find your comfort zone. See what paths work for you—find what works with your game—and you’ll find success more times than not. Also, most importantly, stay dry.

Birdie here works. Eagle is what you want because of course it is, although going under par isn’t the worst backup plan.

How do you play?

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